If you keep in contact with the local businesses in your area, you can uncover some significant property opportunity for your commercial real estate agency. The process of contacting businesses is far easier than chasing down the property owners in your region. A good prospecting model should involve both processes in balance.
It is the local businesses and the decision makers behind those businesses that can tell you what is going on in their region and their street; they can also tell you what they may be looking for in regard to future property activity. It is easy to find local businesses, and it is easy to make contact with them. The business telephone book is a valuable asset to grow your database.
Given that the local businesses are essentially the backbone of property occupancy, part of your database should be deliberately constructed for local business networking and the market intelligence that you gather. Some of those businesses will be tenants, whilst other businesses will be owner occupiers. Either way, there are property needs and challenges from time to time that they will need help with.
You can approach local business proprietors in two different ways.
- You can cold call them as part of your prospecting model on a daily basis. This process is quite successful and worthwhile merging into your networking program. Contacting 40 businesses a day is quite easy when you use the business telephone book.
- You can personally canvass the business streets and business locations as part of a ‘drop-in’ prospecting activity. Getting your face in front of business proprietors in this way will help you gather significant market intelligence.
It should also be said that any significant property with multiple tenants will be a good opportunity for new business prospecting. Many top commercial real estate agents will pick a large CBD building with multiple tenants and work through the list of tenants until they know what every tenant requires by way of occupancy and when their lease expires. The direct approach works just about every time.
Many business owners and corporations do not have the experience or the expertise when it comes to commercial or retail property investigation and relocation. For this very reason, they require local market assistance; you can be the source of this very valuable market intelligence. Special property services may also be required such as tenant advocacy, or buyer’s agent.
Businesses and larger corporations will generally utilize these specialized services with the right agency. They then become your client and will be paying your commission. It is perhaps the reverse process to the normal sale or lease transaction, however it is quite productive and rewarding from an agency perspective. You simply need to change your perspective on the transaction to help the business owner or corporation find the right property locally with the correct improvements.
The way to make this process work is to establish an initial base of contact with the right decision makers in every local business. Over time, you can reconnect with these people and encourage a meeting at the right time. Trust and information will help you open the door on future property requirements. It may take three or four telephone calls every couple of months before you get to the right decision maker with a face to face meeting.
These business owners and business managers will appreciate local market intelligence and feedback when it comes to property rentals, property availability, and property prices. As a strategy in connecting with these people, you can create a single page brochure that you can leave with them detailing the recent property activity and results.